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How QR Codes Work

Everything you should know about QR codes. How does the QR code work and possible areas to use.

How it works

QR codes, or quick response codes, is a type of 2D bar code that may be decoded using your smartphone with a QR code reader.  From being a tracking mechanism for auto parts, QR codes have proven to be very useful in marketing and convenience related applications that is more suitable for smartphone users.  In the recent months, we have seen QR codes show up on marketing materials such as movie posters, promotional posters for various products, billboards, flyers, among other things.  These have also been seen on newspaper ads, business cards, artwork, and other everyday things.

There are two main things that you have to have when you deal with QR codes:

1. A mobile phone with a camera and Internet connectivity
2. A QR code reader

Where do I get a QR code reader?

Most smartphones coming out nowadays have a QR code reader already installed. For some, you would need to download the reader and install it yourself.

Note that you would have to check on the compatibility of these readers with your phones as some readers work only on iPhones or Android phones. There are readers that work on the Symbian OS found on Nokia phones and Java found on lower end smart phones.

How do you scan the QR code?

After you have your reader installed, fire up the application and snap a picture of the QR code.  Make sure that your hand is steady and that you are able to include the whole code into the picture.  There will be some instances when the scan would fail, do not worry, just keep on snapping.

Resolving the link

Depending on your software, it may take some five to thirty seconds for the application to resolve the link for you.  That is to say, to decode the information written behind the code.  If it is a URL, the QR code reader will open your browser and let you surf the mobile site the code links to.

Diagram image showing how a QR Code works.  You scan with modile device, and it sends you to the website.

If it is a VCF card, a file that contains a person's contact information, it will offer to save the information into your address book.

How do I get my own QR code?

Follow the QR Code Creation Process.

QR codes EVERYWHERE

QR Code barcode technology is an incredibly versatile and cost effective technology that is available to you. A wave of acceptance is sure to hit this part of the world as soon as more people become aware of its great many uses.

Ordinary people can generate a QR Code for free and get other people or customers to go to our CareerTech website, one of our website's blog areas, specific marketing campaigns, services pages, articles, events, media, or other CareerTech resources online.

It also acts as a business card. Some people are already beginning to generate a QR Code and printing them onto their business cards too.

With QR Codes, it simply means that you now have a bridge between your offline product with online information.  The separation between the two is now blurred.  What's more, with mobile phones like smart phones, you can get connected to anything that is online, no matter where you go.

Top 4 reasons why QR codes are going to hit it big

1. There are currently an estimated of more than 53 million smartphone users in the United States.  More around the world.  Also, even mobile phones that have Java capability are now able to get a QR code reader.  There is an audience for QR codes that is just waiting to be tapped!

2. It is FREE to generate and use. You can easily get your own QR code and embed these to your promotional materials, business cards, company letterheads and merchandise.  What's more,  it is easier to deploy QR code strategies and measure their effectiveness than traditional marketing and Internet marketing combined.

3. You are not limited in terms of length, size and space.   Traditional advertising works on limits.  You pay for additional airtime, additional advertising space, additional newspaper columns.  But fixing a QR code to your advertisement, you are literally limitless in the amount of information you can include in your ad.

4. More and more people are getting on the Web through their mobiles.  Global mobile data traffic has steadily been increasing with the advent of wireless connectivity, high speed Internet and Internet-enabled mobile phones.  According to a study conducted by Opera, mobile data traffic in August 2010 increased by 10% in over a month's time, marking the fastest increase in the preceeding six months.  This upward trend has also been continuously observed since the introduction of the iPhone in 2007.

What are dynamic QR codes?

Normal QR codes are static as the website address is hard coded in the actual image so you'll always be directed to the same web page when the QR code is scanned. If you change your website address or simply want surfers to be directed to a different page other than what you had originally set your QR Code to point to then you need to create a new one and redistribute your literature.